Free Markets, Free People

Union membership continues to decline

Yup, it is on a downward spiral.  When actually given a choice (you know, the thing the left claims everyone should have?), many people opt out:

Government figures released Wednesday showed union membership declined from 11.8 percent to 11.3 percent of the workforce, another blow to a labor movement already stretched thin by battles in Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan and other states to curb bargaining rights and weaken union clout.

Overall membership fell by about 400,000 workers to 14.4 million, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. More than half the loss, about 234,000, came from government workers, including teachers, firefighters and public administrators.

Funny that.  We talk about monopolies, but monopolies don’t work when government doesn’t prop them up, and, as pointed out, when government withdraws its sanction and force, when real choice is allowed, people will opt out.

And, of course, it’s not just the government sector where unions are losing members:

But unions also saw losses in the private sector even as the economy created 1.8 million new jobs in 2012. That membership rate fell from 6.9 percent to 6.6 percent, a troubling sign for the future of organized labor, as job growth generally has taken place at nonunion companies.

Unions are an anachronism … they just won’t admit it yet.  And, for the next 4 years at least, they’re still going to have political power because of who is in the White House.

But as more and more states become right to work, and the jobless see employers migrating to those states, I think the “market” will take care of itself – if the government will let it.


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26 Responses to Union membership continues to decline

  • Unions…part of the Blue State Model…are, like all its defining parts, doomed.  Which is not to say that some unions will not survive, only that they will have to offer some value to both members and employers when increasingly exposed to market forces, and will have to show society they can abide by the laws all the rest of us do.

  • Unions are an anachronism … they just won’t admit it yet.

    Actually, they are anti-market-reality.
    Always were, always will be – it’s their very nature. Like the welfare state, they can never be contained, either internally nor externally.

  • Given that there’s 4.3 million members of the NRA ‘Extreme Fringe group’
    Where does that put the 14.4 million Union (and not ALL the same union….) members?
    1 percent of the national population IS an extreme fringe group, but 4 percent is not?

    • Where does that put liberals? Extreme x 10^9 Fringe group?

      • “Where does that put liberals?”
        Your intent was different, but that made me think….Can I pick where some of them go?  Like, say, Dianne Feinstein? I’m thinking…Nunavut…. in early January.

    • And given that joining the NRA is an entirely voluntary action, where joining a union is frequently not, that 4 million is actually somewhat lower.

  • I’ve never understood the concept of public employee unions.
    My problem always seems to boil down to the “Catch-22” of having the party whose employees are unionized as the enforcement entity.  I’m mean, if you can’t trust the state to give you “fair” employment standards, what makes you think the state will enforce “fair” employment standards ?

    • It’s easy. You buy the employment benifits you want using campaign contributions. After all, what you are doing is helping your “boss” get elected.

  • And as unions have become less influential, so average wages have stagnated—thanks to right-to-work-for-less.

    • Of course, because we are all too stupid to join a union, which is…because we are all too stupid…the only way we can command a competitive wage.
      OK, I’ll just say it.  You’re a moron.

      • Yeah, when people get to choose what they consider to be best for themselves , they become stupid.    This is why we need politicians to help narrow our choices down to the proper ones for us.

    • Ya just don’t see any relationship between increased wages and increased costs for products do you.
      You also don’t see how people not doing their jobs are protected for not doing them.
      Ever been threatened crossing a picket line so you can do your job Tad?
      Tell the truth Tad, HAVE you ever worked in a Union shop, or is your wealth of knowledge acquired through the talking points seminars and college courses?

    • Why don’t you ask the utility users in New Jersey how little influence the unions had after Hurricane Sandy?

  • Speaking of Unions – NLRB….
    Now let’s watch and see how Big Ears just ignores the court and carries on about the business of fundamentally transforming America.

    • I haven’t drilled down into this ruling, but I would have ALSO ruled that anything done by the outlaw NLRB is null and void.

    • The Obama administration is expected to appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, but if it stands, it means hundreds of decisions issued by the board over more than a year are invalid. It also would leave the five-member labor board with just one validly appointed member, effectively shutting it down. The board is allowed to issue decisions only when it has at least three sitting members.
      AND it was unanimous.  Very unlikely to be reversed by the Supremes, IMNHO.

      • I particularly enjoyed this part….
        “The dearth of intrasession appointments in the years and decades following the ratification of the Constitution speaks far more impressively than the history of recent presidential exercise of a supposed power to make such appointments,”

        Read more:
        Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

        Nor do I care that a Republican might not be able to ABUSE the same power as a result of this ruling.   If ‘The RULES’ don’t mean something, consistently, there’s no damn point in having them.

        You know what this mean though….these justices must be replaced for judicial activism and possibly because they’re a bunch of racists!

      • Word is yes, the court invalidated their decisions covering the last 12 months.

  • Another thing of beauty – which should go under McQ’s unintended consequences heading I guess…this one about the health care law
    Read this one….
    to me it’s right up there with demonstrating that the new gun laws can only be applied to non criminals by the premise that you can’t prosecute criminals who don’t register their guns as that would be self incrimination under the 5th Amendment.

  • And, like predicting the sun will rise…..

    The Board respectfully disagrees with today’s decision and believes that the President’s position in the matter will ultimately be upheld. It should be noted that this order applies to only one specific case, Noel Canning, and that similar questions have been raised in more than a dozen cases pending in other courts of appeals.
    In the meantime, the Board has important work to do. The parties who come to us seek and expect careful consideration and resolution of their cases, and for that reason, we will continue to perform our statutory duties and issue decisions.

    In other words, Pearce is indicating that the NLRB will ignore the Appeals Court ruling because, as he interprets, the ruling only applies to the particular case, Noel Canning v. NLRB, that went before the court.”